The value of energy efficiency is obvious: it saves homeowners money on energy bills and reduces power plant CO2 emissions to lower carbon footprints. The benefits aren’t new, but they continue to become more important as energy bills rise. Since 2004, residential electricity prices have jumped 39%.1 In fact, the average homeowner spends $2,200 per year on household energy bills—which is 4% percent of their average pre-tax income.2 By way of comparison, median household property taxes are $2,090 per year.3
Energy efficiency is becoming increasingly important to homeowners. However, there’s generally a disconnect between the energy-efficient features most frequently being offered and those that matter most to home buyers.
In research by the National Association of Realtors:
Features that homeowners consider “very important” in environmentally friendly homes:
In research by the National Association of Home Builders:
Of the top 15 features builders plan to offer, 3 relate to energy efficiency:
Home buyers aren’t having their biggest priorities met by the current offerings. They’re interested in lower heating and cooling costs, but appliances have essentially* no impact on heating and cooling costs, and the impact from windows is limited if the rest of the home isn’t air tight and well insulated. Insulation is a simple, cost-effective feature to include in residential builds and appeals to today’s buyer.
No one wants a noisy home—and part of delivering a better home is ensuring it’s built with sound insulation in mind. Noise can come from outside (sirens, traffic, neighbors) or within (children, TVs, music etc.), and evolving home preferences are making sound control more of an issue.Trending preferences for open concept houses with fewer walls or noisier urban locations are making homes built to minimize sound more popular than ever before. As further evidence on how important acoustic insulation and design has become, the start-up company HowLoud has created a noise score for real estate listings.4 Just as WalkScore rates the walkability of a listed home’s locale, HowLoud is scoring noisiness. As this feature, or something like it, is incorporated into listings on sites like Trulia, Zillow and others, it will likely drive an even greater sensitivity to noise-reduction among home buyers.Noise is complex and very situation specific, so simply adding more insulation alone is not an effective noise control strategy. However, additional insulation will almost always need to be a core component of a smart noise control strategy.
The health consciousness of homeowners continues to grow in lockstep with an increasing public focus on promoting general well-being beyond simple health. Asthma rates have increased, allergies are a bigger problem than before and homeowners are aware that their home can contribute to their health and wellness–or detract from it.In the residential building space, this means prospective buyers want to be given confidence that their new home was built with products that are safe for their families and keep harmful pollutants, allergens, and chemicals out. While no insulation product alone can ensure a healthy home, insulation and air sealing are a critical component of a whole-building strategy to deliver healthy homes.
Give customers a reason to do business with you.